Korea Culture – Lunar New Year Day (설날)

In Korea, the first day of the lunar calender is known as the Lunar New Year Day (설날). In this year (2010), the Lunar New Year Day falls on February 14. On this day, Korean families will gather and celebrate together traditionally. One tradition observed on Lunar New Year celebration is the eating of rice cake soup (떡국). It is said that it will bring one longevity. While Korean families and relatives gather together to eat rice cake soup, they also make wishes for each other for better health in this new year.

Rice cake soup (떡국)

Other than eating rice cake soup, Korean buddhists will pay visit to the temple to make greetings to Buddha and to the Reverend of the temple. Some folk games which Koreans will do during Lunar New Year Day include playing shuttlecock with the feet and kite-flying.

(credit – gongjunim.wordpress.com)

Gongjunim wishes all a Happy and Healthy Lunar New Year! ^^

Korea Culture – Chuseok (추석: 秋夕)

chuseok

Chuseok (추석: 秋夕) is the harvest festival of Korea which is held on the 15th of August on the lunar calender. This year Chuseok, it falls on the 3rd October. There will be 3-day holidays for Koreans during this festival. For this year, it will be from 2nd October to 4th October.

During this period, many Koreans will go back to their hometown to pay their respects to their ancestors and also have reunion with their family. They will also have songpyeon (송편) together. Songpyeon is a traditional Korean food which is eaten during Chuseok. It is a crescent-shaped rice cake which is made from rice or non-glutinous rice powder.

songpyeon

Happy Chuseok in advance to everyone!~ ^^

Korean Food – Samgyetang (삼계탕)

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Samgyetang (삼계탕) is Korean’s traditional ginseng chicken soup. It is a healthy food which is made of a whole young chicken, ginseng and other herbal ingredients. It is also known as a popular summer tonic.

There are sambok (삼복) which are the hottest period in Korea’s summer season.

They are:
~ Chobok (초복)
~ Jungbok (중복)
~ Malbok (말복
)

It has been a traditional culture in Korea where Koreans will eat Samgyetang (삼계탕) as tonic food during summer season. It is because they want to have a rest and build up their health stamina by taking tonics during the hot summer period (삼복).

As it is the summer season now, don’t forget to try Samgyetang (삼계탕) as an experience for Korean traditional food culture! ^^